The palm responds rapidly to the
application of fertilizer. An additional organic material that is a principal
care in fertilization needs to be added to desert soils, which are always
lacking in humus. Anything available may be used in arid agriculture. Manure
should be applied once a year or every other year. A simple method, for example,
is to tie an animal, such as a goat, to each palm for a few days. Application of
manure should be made in winter; thus, the organic material has a chance to
become well incorporated in the soil before summer. It is preferable to spread
the manure around the palm and then mix it with the top surface of the ground.
Commercial fertilizers have been
used very little in date palm growing regions, and they are likely to be less
satisfactory than rough organic material. The best practical advice seems to be
to use plenty of organic material, particularly that of a nitrogenous nature.